We are living in special times. Many transformations.
A lot of adaptation and new ways of working. It is a very rich experience!
When the pandemic began, I thought everything would collapse. So I started making video "drops" directly from my house about the artists in our collection.
Much to my surprise it was a success!
This is a quick way to produce new, long-lasting exhibitions. Since it is on our website, it is called The Viewing Room.
It allows us to create content about artists that are not currently represented. If this, on the one hand, provides greater interaction between the gallery and artists, on the other hand it achieves our objective of allowing them to show their work without the usual bureaucracy and difficulties.
So it is with Martin Lanezan. His fabric paintings, as he calls them, caught my eye and I want to share them with you.
Martin Lanezan came from the interior of Argentina.
He migrated to the country's capital, Buenos Aires before moving to São Paulo where he has lived as an immigrant since 2014. His need to embrace his identity with layers and layers of fabrics, reading and art are thus, his reason to be here.
Lanezan began working with fabrics in 2018. This is the year he made the transition from painting on paper to fabric: applying paint to the pieces of cloth he acquires or buys. Lanezan, who began his artistic career in 2008, still uses the same images, shapes and themes seen in his early works. The fantastic and popular legends of folklore are mixed in what would be his contemporary art. He makes the handicraft and folk art that populate his memory and dreams into a myriad of shapes and colors, a type of thematic collage "sewn" in various fabrics and cloth.
There are moments when he enters with a crayon drawing on parts of the fabric sewn onto the cloth. He creates human figures in ritual situations, symbolic animals such as the owl, the black duck, the snake, the tapir, the jaguar and the legendary ceibo flower, a national symbol of Argentina with deep meaning. Animals and flowers can be identified as part of the fauna, flora and legends that inhabit dreams expressed in a frame by frame film made of drawings, contours and planes of seams that are seen in his work.
Traditions, legends, myths and symbols inhabit the torpor of a siesta on a farm in the Argentine countryside, where the artist was born and raised. This is a time of rest in the early afternoon. It is the time for a nap or a deep sleep, as in a well-slept night. It is filled with dreams that mark his memory. His dreams are an inspiration that are visible in the scenes, nightmares and myths kept in the memories he has carried since his youth. This is a time spent in a magical and dreamlike Argentine countryside. He carries legends that he used to hear and now mixes with popular stories and visions that do not obey a reason but are the subjective and the spirit of nature. The artist makes an intuitive apprehension of the universe from these dreams. They are essential for learning about human life. Dreaming is learning about the future and new ways of seeing the world which make them essential to understanding our human condition. His cloth paintings are transformed into symbolic language that are nothing more than a way of reporting natural mystical concepts and fables of contemporary popular culture.
He also finds introspective time in the act of embroidering and sewing. The precariousness of the repetitive hand gestures create a self-referential work that brings life inside the edges of the cloth.
Lanezan always wanted to paint folklore and its phantasmagoria. What he ends up doing is a kind of collage with planes of colored fabric that have different prints and textures which he assembles a magical narrative that can only be thought of precisely within dream his “paintings with fabric” are something like a somnambulist who interacts with his own “hallucinations”.
The night arrived… “First we experienced surrender to the shadows with closed eyelids, initiating a reversible disconnect between the body and the outside world. Then came the transient dream-like hallucinations with the onset of sleep, which soon give way to dreamless sleep, a state of abandoned stillness and greatly reduced sensory reactivity. Finally, after almost two hours, the intense and vivid dreams begin to emerge that we sometimes remember when we wake up” (Sidarta Ribeiro in The Oracle of the Night, p. 135).
He didn't know how to embroider nor does he want to make embroidery and sewing perfect. Lanezan enjoys the act of repetition and the repeated gestures of embroidering and sewing. It goes with the line from one plane to another. The planes of these pictorial collages took the shape of a poncho by receiving a vertical cut in the center thus, allowing them to be worn as protection and shelter.
They also represent the maternal home left behind. In this way, he represents landscapes from memory and makes known in his work new landscapes of the unconscious, never before imagined.
Lanezan starts painting out of sheer necessity. He travels while sewing by hand going into a trance trying the various stitches. By twisting and twisting and tacking the repetitive gesture of sewing, he joins the parts transforming them into a dream image. He sees painting as something mystical with accumulated and significant everyday energy. He makes a mixture or collage of shapes of animals, birds, plants and figures. This is similar to the desire of human beings wanting to encounter painting or carrying a painting over the body as a cloak that covers everything. His paintings, fabric collages, shadows of dreams have a human component.
The sleepwalker who wears the robe believes so much in the dream that he lives and sees the dreams turning them into nightmares of reality.
Museu Bispo do Rosario Arte Contemporânea